# What is the mechanism for the oxidative cleavage of diketones via permanganate under basic/hot conditions?

The products of the reaction are carboxylates. What exactly would cause the alkyne to cleave?

Alkynes react just as alkenes in the oxidative cleavage with $\ce{KMnO_4-}$ (the mechanism is the same). The difference is that since there is a triple bond, $\ce{MnO_4-}$ doesn't break the molecule apart like it does with alkenes (only if you use high temperature and high base/$\ce{MnO_4-}$ concentration), instead it forms a diketone. What causes the alkyne to cleave is the oxidant ion $\ce{MnO_4-}$ that is reduced to $\ce{MnO_2}$.